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The Motherisk Nausea and Vomiting of Pregnancy (NVP) Forum

Motherisk receives questions from around the world about morning sickness symptoms, effects, treatments and ways to cope. Those questions and answers are posted here for anyone to read, provided the reader acknowledges and accepts the proviso and disclaimer below.

When your doctor recommends Gravol

Treatment
Date: 2000-08-09

Question:
My fiance is four and a half months pregnant and has NVP. She has been taking Diclectin for it. She recently had a severe case of the stomach flu on top of that. When she went in to the hospital (because she was worried about the baby), the doctor on duty gave her Gravol and told her that she should take Gravol supositories to calm her stomach down then to take the Diclectin. I thought that Gravol was not a safe drug to be taking when pregnant? When asked the doctor said that it was completely safe and there was no risk to the baby. Could you please let me know if he is correct and could you let me know of any articles or studies done on the risks of taking Gravol during pregnancy. Thank you very much and I think that it is great that you are providing this service to help people get through and understand their pregnancy.

Answer:
The doctor was correct to reassure you about Gravol. Gravol (dimenhydrinate) is an antihistamine. Antihistamines have been studied and are known not to increase the 1% to 3% baseline risk of malformation that exists for all pregnancies. Initially when women vomit and cannot even keep their Diclectin pills, we suggest using Gravol suppositories. Diclectin also contains antihistamine (doxylamine) and has been formulated especially for use in pregnancy, with a delayed release coating. It also contains vitamin B6 which is known to be beneficial for NVP. For more information you can read the July 1998 Update (Pharmacologic Treatment of NVP)posted in the Newsletter/Update/Publication section of this website or call our NVP Helpline at 1-800-436-8477.

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